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Brief Published: 22 Apr 2013

Retail Concepts: Home Entertaining


Two new design stores with a sharp focus on home entertaining have opened in California. Given the popularity of party-planning blogs and platforms such as Pinterest, this decision to hone in on inspired hosts seems to be a shrewd one. 

In San Francisco, Hudson Grace (opened at the tail end of 2012) combines elegant tableware and linens with candles and decorative home accent pieces. Its founders – former Williams-Sonoma product developer Monelle Totah and Restoration Hardware alumnus Gary McNatton – are both consummate hosts, whose entertaining-driven edit is informed by simplicity and grace. 

Los Angeles store Chay also takes the idea of a dinner party as its starting point, but expands beyond tabletop to include hostess gifts, cookbooks, centrepieces and even party dresses. Owner Chay Wike, a women’s apparel designer, opened her store in October 2012. 

Though Hudson Grace and Chay both cater to an affluent client base, there is also an opportunity to bring this kind of product edit to a younger demographic. With party planning books by bloggers Erica Domesek of PS: I Made This! and Camille Styles on the horizon for late 2013-14 (both of which speak to a largely millennial audience), we expect to see renewed enthusiasm for home entertaining among this generation as well. 

For more on home entertaining influencers, see the Stylus report Best of the Design Blogs: DIY. For more on the growing trend for hosting at home see Home Hospitality: Domestic Design's Entertaining Makeover

Hudson Grace